Footballers mind-set to an injury – Road to Recovery

My scars 5 days post operation.

My main aim once I was home was to reduce the swelling. I had a lot of bandages on so I wasn’t able to ice effectively.

My scars 5 days post operation.
My scars 5 days post operation.

James Calder asked me to keep my foot above my hip as much as possible so the fluid would drain, he recommended for every hour, I shouldn’t spend longer than 5 minutes with my foot down. This isn’t as easy at it sounds! Luckily Emma has been amazing and has waited on me all week!

I am non-weight bearing for the first two weeks so even if I do make myself a drink it is near impossible to take it to another room without spilling it. So it has meant Emma has been doing everything. Its difficult as well not being able to really engage with Jack and Evie when they are playing. I seem to be trying to persuade them to either play a board game or watch a film with me. Nevertheless they have been keeping me well entertained, Jack showing me his football tricks and Evie doing her gymnastic routines!

One thing I can control is my diet! I am a bit of a chocoholic and I do have to watch what I eat as my metabolism doesn’t seem to the same as most of the boys in our team! I did a lot of research in hospital on how to improve my recovery and with some help from Emma who is a personal trainer and a real nutrition enthusiast and help from the sports science team at Wolves we have come up with a plan, which especially during the first 2 weeks will be vital on how quickly I will recover.

As I said earlier, the first few weeks are all about reducing swelling so I am eating foods high with anti inflammatory values, no refined sugars, and foods with high calcium content to help bone growth. So as you can imagine our fridge is very green and natural at the moment, we have kale and spinach coming out of our ears! I do love my cheat meals and chocolate but I know especially in the early stages I have to be disciplined enough to see the bigger picture! Not as easy as it sounds but one week in and so far so good!

I was back in at the training ground on Thursday to see the medical team. They wanted to take my bandages off and assess the wounds. Also Phil Hayward could give me different things to get started with to help with the recovery process! I could start using a Game Ready machine at home, which is a brilliant bit of equipment, it supplies ice and compression using different body part wraps.  I could also start using an Exogen machine; this is a bone-healing piece of equipment, which uses high frequency waves applied to my foot to encourage bone growth. Once the bandages were off, it was interesting to see how my foot looked, and I was very impressed with how the scars looked, I also didn’t have much swelling so all the keeping my foot above my hip had really helped!

Game Ready on with the football!
Game Ready on with the football!

Now back at home one week on from the injury, I’m sat at home watching the football scores on the TV, Game Ready on whilst writing my first ever blog! Since the injury, everything has gone to plan and I have had a really positive week, everything seems to be on track. I’m hoping a weekly blog will help me along my road to recovery but also give people who read it a real personal insight into the football world and what it takes, mentally and physically to recover from an injury. As I’ve mentioned footballers live a privileged life but I know players who have really struggled with mentally overcoming their battles with injury and this will hopefully touch on some of the mental battles that I am going to face. But for now, I am positive, have great people around me and I’ve already nearly completed 10% of my road to recovery!

Hope you enjoyed it!

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